Ancestry Academy announces short courses — GEG recommended

AAncestry Academy Short Coursesncestry Academy has introduced a welcome addition to its already stellar course offerings.  Academy members can now enjoy short courses, less than five minutes, presented by some of the world’s most qualified genealogy instructors. This wonderful resource has earned its place in our Wish I’d Known Series. Continue reading Ancestry Academy announces short courses — GEG recommended

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What’s OCR? Turning a picture of text into text

What is OCR?You’re embarrassed to question it. People throw out the term “OCR” as though it’s common knowledge. You don’t want anyone to know you missed the memo. Well, a lot of people missed the memo. Genealogy draws heavily on this technology, so let’s take up the question: “What’s OCR?”

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Photo context: treasures in the details

Genealogical riches in photo contextIn a photo of my great-grandparents, I happened to notice on the dresser behind them what looked like a tobacco container. Was I seeing a throwback to childhood pranks? Prince Albert in a can? I scanned the photo at high resolution and zoomed in. It was Prince Albert. I began to wonder what else I might see in the photo context. In one detail after another, my ancestors’ world came into focus. 

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Narrowing birth dates — a free tool does the math for you

Narrowing dates summary imageA census record offers you a moment in time when your ancestor was, say, five years old. That gives you a potential birth date range of 365 days, plus a possible Leap Day. If you use multiple records, however, you can use the overlaps to whittle down that range, getting closer to the real date. Doing this math in your head, unfortunately, presents a headaches. But I have a solution for you: the Date Narrowing Calculator [revised as of 1/6/2017]. A gift for my fellow GEGs.

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Genetic genealogy: why more DNA is better

Genetic genealogy-- More is BetterGenetically speaking, my sisters and I are all half Mom and half Dad, right? DNA 101. So, only one of us needs to do a DNA test, and then we’ll all know our ethnic origins, correct? . . . OK, I confess I never took DNA 101. But thanks to AncestryDNA, I have learned the answer is no (at least when it comes to autosomal DNA). The more family members you test, the fuller the picture of your genetic genealogy will become.

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Let’s make history in this FamilySearch Indexing campaign

FamilySearch Indexing Worldwide Event 2016FamilySearch Indexing has thrown down the gauntlet, and the challenge is on. We need 72,000 bright people to  join an indexing brigade processing worldwide records between July 15 and 17. Let’s see what 72 hours can produce!

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Transcribing historical manuscripts in PDF software

PDF as Transcription ToolMake transcribing historical manuscripts easier and more valuable using a desktop tool you already have. PDF software can let you zoom in on the manuscript, while transcribing the text as comments. You have not only transcribed; you have made the document searchable without separating it from the scanned image.

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Citing sources: the Desktop Dilemma series

Desktop dilemma -- citing sourcesThis newest installment of the Desktop Dilemma series takes up the question of how the Big Three genealogy desktop software packages handle citing sources. How easy do they make it to leave an effective bread-crumb trail back to where you found your facts?


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The Genealogical Society: Revise or Demise?

Vigil for the Genealogical SocietyGenealogy is emerging, growing, thriving. So why do we hear rumors of the impending death of the local genealogical society? Is it “revise or demise” for these once-vital pillars of family history research? And what is the GEG’s obligation to local organizations? Continue reading The Genealogical Society: Revise or Demise?

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